Messi set for Wednesday landing

Although the organisers are tight-lipped about Lionel Messi's arrival for security reasons, sources have revealed that the Argentina captain will arrive in the early hours of Wednesday.

Javier Mascherano, Lionel Messi

After their experience of a slip-up during Diego Maradona's tour to the city about three years ago, the Celebrity Management Group are wary about any repeat.

More than 50,000 people had lined up on the streets of football-crazy Kolkata at midnight when Maradona, accompanied by girlfriend Veronica, had arrived in December, 2008.

There was a see-through bus arrangement, but Maradona preferred another vehicle to go to the team hotel. Hundreds of fans, wearing Argentine jerseys and carrying Maradona's cutouts and posters, welcomed him.

"We don't want to disclose the timing of Messi's arrival. Let people speculate on their own. We don't want to put any extra pressure on Messi when he lands here. We don't want a security slip up," Dharamdutt Pandey, CEO of the sports management firm, said.

Incidentally, the organisers had sent out a detailed arrival timings of the other Argentina players, including coach Alejandro Sabella, who came with deputy Julian Camino and 15 others Tuesday morning.

On Wednesday, 18 Argentines will join the squad, including Real Madrid duo of Gonzalo Higuain and Angel Di Maria.

Atletico de Madrid forward Eduardo Salvio, Mancheser City's Sergio Aguero and Internazionale midfielder Ricardo Alvarez will join the squad on Wednesday.

Messi and Aguero are likely to land in the early hours of Wednesday morning, as per the travel itinerary organisers sent out to the media.

Messi and his Barca teammate, Javier Mascherano, are held back as the Pep Guardiola's side take on Villareal in the La Liga in Spain, Tuesday night.

Meanwhile, strong security measures are in place. The State police has left no stone unturned to ensure that there are no loopholes in the security apparatus.

"No liquor inside the venue, not even any kind of bottle. The violator will be penalised," police sources revealed.



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